the vast majority Precursor of raspberry ketone Benefits of raspberry ketones

Food Waste Composting in DB

Posted on September 17th, 2017 in Food,Recycling,Uncategorized by Dana Winograd

There has been a food waste composting programme for household organic waste running in DB for the past few years. If you are not part of the programme, please contact your village management office to find out if you can be involved. Every village has at minimum one food waste bin.

The instructions are posted below. The main things to remember are:

  • Do NOT put plastic bags in the bin – throw your food waste in loose
  • Only chicken and fish bones – no other animal bones
  • No liquid – should be as dry as possible
  • No hard pits/shells such as avocado, walnuts, etc
  • No corn cobs or husks

If you put in the wrong materials you risk contaminated the entire lot, especially if you put in a plastic bag.

The bins are collected from the villages between 9am and 12 noon.

Wouldn’t it be great if everyone was composting their food waste!



Tonight’s movie night at Zaks!

Posted on May 17th, 2016 in Events,Food,Recycling,Resources by Kate Wade

A little reminder…

Tonight 7pm at Zaks is the first in our hope-to-be monthly ‘Films for Change’.

Here’s the trailer for this 75min movie.

Hope to see you there!

See our previous post for more information on the movie…




Bycatch- the tuna industry’s dirty little secret- Green peace article..

Posted on October 22nd, 2011 in Beach Clean-up,Food,From You-Articles/Tidbits/Gems by Kate Wade

Hi there DB Green,

Here’s an article passed onto me from Angie. I noted the other day when buying some tuna that I could only find one brand of  tuna at Welcome that I felt I could buy- it was B&F and it says the tuna is skipjack tuna which is currently acceptable. Other brands were too vague or actually admitted using yellowfin tuna which is decreasing in numbers and is considered a type to avoid by Greenpeace. Some said they used good fishing methods but didn’t say what that was or who it was good for. Have a look at the writing on the sides of your cans next time- it’s not always about price- sometimes you need to vote with your purse. In the case of B&F it was pretty much the same price as the others though I don’t know what their fishing methods are.

Cheers, Kate


Aussies love canned tuna, but our appetite for it is having a devastating impact.

tuna bycatch greenpeace

Most if not all of the commercial tuna species are now exploited at unsustainable long-term levels after only a few decades of industrial fishing.

Less well-known is the effect tuna fishing is having on other species. As a result of wasteful fishing methods, our tuna catch is causing the widespread death of endangered and threatened marine animals – including sharks, rays, dolphins and turtlas – known collectively as ‘bycatch.’

In tuna purse seine fisheries using Fish Aggregation Devices, or FADs (floating objects, often equipped with satellite tracking, used to attract tuna) for every 10kg catch, up to 1 kg is bycatch and a further 2kg is juvenile tuna – meaning that it is too young to reproduce.

This bycatch is the tuna industry’s dirty little secret.

Greenpeace’s 2011 canned tuna ranking revealed that 8 out of 10 Australian brands continue to source tuna using purse seine nets with FADs resulting in high levels of bycatch. Only one major brand – Safcol – has dropped this practice fully by switching to 100 per cent pole and line caught tuna.

On October 13 2011 we launched our latest oceans report – What a waste: the hidden cost of canned tunaon Sydney’s iconic Bondi Beach with a little help from our friends at Bondi Rescue. At the launch, one of Australia’s largest canned tuna brands – Greenseas – announced it will commit to going FAD free by 2015.

What a waste: the hidden cost of canned tuna

In the UK all supermarkets and all major tuna brands have announced they will no longer source tuna caught with purse seines and FADs, making the UK the world’s most sustainable tuna market.

The solution to reducing canned tuna’s bycatch is simple. The first and most urgent step is to ban the use of FADs in purse seine fisheries. Doing so would, at a stroke, reduce this bycatch by up to 90%.

We have a choice. Either we force our favourite brands to change the way they source their fish, or we face the real possibility that our children will be the last generation to have tuna in their sandwiches.

Take action

Tell Australian tuna brands and supermarkets to change their tuna



Posted on August 25th, 2011 in Food,Resources by Kate Wade

Hi fellow DB greeners,

Occasionally I get emails from green organisations that I want to pass on. This one is from GREENPEACE Australia Pacific in regards tuna. If you like to eat canned tuna make an informed decision- obviously avoid blue and yellowfin tuna but where possible find out what you can about the brands and their fishing methods. Some methods are quite destructive to all marine life. Find out more from this article below…

Dear Kate 

Last Thursday we launched our latest Canned Tuna Ranking at the Sydney Aquarium – this new ranking has some exciting features, thanks to you.

Because people like you took action after we released our previous ranking, the Australian tuna industry has made huge improvements towards tuna fishing and protecting our oceans. But unfortunately, it still has a long way to go. We’re still negotiating with all the brands and adding your voice again will impact their decisions.

> TAKE ACTION: Tell tuna brands to change their tuna
View Greenpeace’s 2011 Canned Tuna Ranking

The good news

•    We’re delighted to announce, we now have the first Australian tuna brand that has ruled out destructive fishing methods! Safcol has committed to using 100% pole and line caught Skipjack tuna, the most sustainable tuna product. This is a remarkable achievement and is the result of consumers like you demanding positive change.

•    Nearly all brands have now ruled out using overfished Yellowfin tuna. This includes repeated offenders, Woolworths.

•    Many brands, like Coles, have now shown support for the creation of marine reserves, as well as improved how they label their cans so consumers can make an informed choice.

The bad news

•    Besides leaders Fish4Ever and Safcol, no other tuna brand has ruled out using destructive fishing methods. This is very distressing. We’re calling for an urgent ban on fish aggregation devices (FADs) used with purse seine fishing. This harmful fishing method is responsible for widespread killing of marine life, such as endangered sharks and turtles, and juvenile tuna.

•    Bottom of the table, Sirena, refuses to rule out using overfished Yellowfin tuna.

•    Too many brands continue to shirk responsibility for their role in the overfishing crisis. All brands must not only stop using destructive fishing methods and overfished species, but support marine reserves, improve the labelling of their product and introduce a sustainability policy.

TAKE ACTION: Tell tuna brands to change their tuna

The entire UK tuna industry has switched to sustainable tuna fishing practices following widespread consumer action. It’s time the Australian industry also changes its tuna.

Thank you for defending our oceans.

Nathaniel Pelle
Oceans Campaigner
Greenpeace Australia Pacific

Greenpeace - Australia Pacific

Say No To Tuna- from WWF newsletter 8th Aug 09

Posted on August 8th, 2009 in Food,From You-Articles/Tidbits/Gems by Kate Wade

Hi folks- I love tuna but I am not sure I can eat it now considering the following info. I have sent an email to my friends at Zaks who have 2 tuna dishes I love to see if they know whether the source of their tuna is sustainable. Until then for me it is off the menu. Likewise as sushi at any restaurants. k

      Seafood Choice Initiative

Bluefin Tuna in Crisis

In Hong Kong, bluefin tuna is better known as a luxurious sushi delicacy than a fish actually on the verge of extinction, due to uncontrolled and indiscriminate exploitation of this migratory mariner including its juveniles. Driven by the fast-growing pursuit of fine-dining globally, all three species of this oceanic giant: southern bluefin tuna (global Southern Ocean), Pacific bluefin tuna (Indo-Pacific Ocean), northern bluefin tuna (Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea) have been largely fished out to satisfy our insatiable taste buds. The rarer they are, the more expensive they become and the closer they are to commercial extinction – which will mean fish will be hard to find for commercial consumption.

There is no alternative to bluefin tuna, as is the case for any other species which is unique on earth. Besides eating it, let’s learn more about this species, one of the fastest swimmers.
tuna © Brian J. Skerry / National Geographic Stock / WWF
It takes about 8 to 14 years for northern and southern bluefin tuna to mature and about 3 to 5 years for Pacific tuna. These fishes reproduce and feed in big groups, which makes them particular vulnerable to fishing pressure.

Problems of overfishing
© Michel GUNTHER /WWF-Canon
Of the three bluefin tuna species, northern and southern are currently listed as “Critically Endangered” on the IUCN Red List, while the Pacific population is considered overfished as suggested by circumstantial evidences and limited information on stock status. Overall, populations have declined dramatically in the last few decades. Since the 1970s, populations of the northern bluefin tuna have declined by almost 90% while southern bluefin tuna have declined by about 85%.

There is currently no quota system and no way of controlling Pacific bluefin tuna fishing in international waters. A large number of immature Pacific bluefin tuna are caught by small, local fisheries in Japan, pushing this population close to the endangered category.

It’s now or never to save bluefin tuna

Bluefin tuna will soon disappear unless urgent action is taken. Members of the public in Hong Kong care, as shown by a survey commissioned by WWF in 2005 where 97% of Cantonese speakers said that they would stop consuming a species if they found out it was endangered. Living in a city that loves seafood, we should be aware of the environmental cost of our incessant and irresponsible pursuit of fine but rare food.

What you can do

As a Hotel/Restaurant, you can…
As a corporate consumer, you can…
As an individual consumer, you can…

Organic Food Shops in Hong Kong

Posted on April 29th, 2009 in Food,Resources by Michele Felder

If you are trying to find more organic food in Hong Kong and get it into your family’s diet, check out the list below for some places to go. Several are located in Discovery Bay, with many more across HK Island depending what is more convenient for you. A number of them take online orders and deliver straight to your door. Doesn’t get much easier than that!

• Fusion in DB
• Organic store in the DB plaza
• Star Ferry farmer’s market
• 360 in Central, Landmark Building
• Green Concepts Health Shop – Causeway Bay, 2882-4848
Organic Sense – Central, Lyndhurst Terrace
Naturo Plus – Wanchai
Simply Organic – Causeway Bay
Health Gate – Central and online
Natures Blessing – Mid-levels and online
Organic Home – Central and online
• Online — Kinoa (DB business)
• Online — Aussie Organics
• Online – Organic Express Unlimited

Reducing the Environmental Impact of Your Food

Posted on April 19th, 2009 in Food by Michele Felder


Ever considered the impact your food choices have on the environment? Thought about how many chemicals, how much water, the carbon emissions caused to produce or transport a few tomatoes or a kilo of steak? Did you breeze past the organic fruit or the biscuits because they were more expensive, not realizing that a big piece of our environmental footprint is what we grow and eat?

It is an area that we can have more influence and control over than we think. In the book, “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle”, the author, Barbara Kingsolver, and her family spend a year eating only food from their own garden or grown in their local community. This required a fair amount of work, as well as adjustments to their diet to eat what was in season and available in farmer’s markets, or what they could raise on their own land (no bananas in Kentucky). Throughout the narrative, she also discusses topics such as genetically modified food, the impact of the corn and soybean industry on the U.S. food chain, the health benefits of eating organic vegetables, the decreasing variety of vegetables available to us, the meat industry and its tendency to focus on quantity rather than quality, and the increasing disconnection many people have from the joys of eating high-quality food. It is an engaging and ultimately optimistic discussion that made me think a lot more about the impact we have on the environment through our food choices.

And it caused me to start thinking about my own food habits. Thinking about how I have viewed food and made decisions with every visit to the supermarket. I was never one to buy organic food-it has always been much more expensive. The concern over GM food seemed over-hyped and a bit extreme. Frequenting farmer’s markets in the U.S. was about entertainment, not about locally-sourced alternatives to supermarket products. And yet, I am now beginning to realize that the choices I make about food can be as impactful from an environmental standpoint, as my decision to recycle or take public transport. Consider the following:

• Growing fruit, grain and vegetables in the modern way uses massive quantities of chemical pesticides and fertilizers – many of which find their way past the target fruit or vegetable and into our air, soil, animals, and water, contaminating them for generations. “When farmers apply fertilizer to fields, half (or more) of that fertilizer generally does not stay on the field to nourish crops, but rather is carried away in water and air to adjacent ecosystems where it can fundamentally change the way those ecosystems function.” (source: John Harrison, 2001, Stanford Univ.)
• Using pesticides and fertilizers reduces the ability of soil to re-generate itself; weakening the environment to be dependent on chemicals, requiring more and more to be used over time.
• Food (meat and vegetables) that is grown, processed, and consumed globally produce high carbon emissions when they are flown around the world or trucked across countries to their final destinations.
• Many species of fish are near extinction due to over-fishing. Tuna, marlin, shark, salmon and cod stocks have declined by more than 90% in the past 50 years. (source: Going Green in Hong Kong)
• One kilo of beef on your table requires 20,000 litres of water to be produced. This, while droughts and the availability of clean drinking water are becoming an environmental crisis in many parts of the globe. (source: Going Green in Hong Kong)
• Cattle, sheep, and goats (ruminant livestock) are a major producer (~14-20%) of methane gas- a green-house gas 23 times more powerful than CO2. One recent study estimated that one beef cow grazing in northern Australia can produce greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to around 1,500 kg of carbon per year. With more than 28 million head of beef cattle (not including the 3M dairy cattle, 85M sheep and 3M goats) in Australia-alone this is obviously a significant source of greenhouse gas.

What is also quite interesting to me is the linkage between what is good for the environment and what is good for us. Here are a few examples:
• Organically grown vegetables reduce the chemicals used in our environment and are generally accepted to have higher levels of nutrients than those grown in the modern, chemical-laden way. (source: Organic Trade Association, Medical News Today)
• Grass-fed cattle have been proven to produce less methane gas during their lifetime; and have lower levels of eColi bacteria, higher levels of Omega-3 fatty acids, and lower levels of saturated fats in the final beef product. (source: CSU Chico, 2007)
• Locally grown fruit and vegetables which produce lower carbon emissions in transportation, also have higher nutrient values because they get to your table sooner after being harvested. (source: UC Davis)

So, you may say, that is all well and good, but we live in Hong Kong. What can we do here when nearly all our food is imported from other countries?

First, satisfy yourself that you want to reduce your environmental impact by re-considering your food choices – you want to ‘vote’ with your diet. Once you have done that, it is much easier to see where you can make changes. Then choose a few areas to focus on. You don’t need to become an overnight vegetarian, eating only organic foods and tofu to have an impact. You can probably reduce the beef and meat you eat by a few servings a week without major feelings of sacrifice. At the same time, increase the vegetables and grains on your plate and feel healthier as a result. You have already started on the journey!

Here are a few more ideas of how to change your diet to positively impact the environment (and your health):
• Buy organically-labeled packaged products – breakfast cereals, biscuits, granola bars, pasta, oil, sauces, peanut butter, jam, tea, coffee. [Check that all the ingredients are certified organic.]
• Buy organic vegetables and fruit, they are increasingly available in major markets
• Buy locally grown food from the farmer’s market at Star Ferry on Sundays or at local organic grocers
• Buy free-range meat and eggs
• Choose fish certified by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) for being sustainably caught or farmed, or select lobster, squid, anchovies, sardines, herrings and other small fish which are more sustainable and have lower levels of mercury.
• Buy organic yogurt, cheese, and milk
• Buy Fair Trade products (coffee, tea, muesli) – these are certified to be produced in an environmentally sustainable way, as well as guaranteeing a fair wage to the farmer.
• Ask stores, restaurants, recreation clubs, hotels, bakeries, where their products come from and whether they have organic or local options available (the more they hear this request, the more likely they are to start providing them)
• Reduce your consumption of meat overall
• Make your own bread (in a bread machine or by hand) using organic flours – no preservatives added!
• Educate yourself about organic food and labeling so you can be a more confident consumer, and also help your friends and family to understand their choices

Like any change in a habit we have built up over a lifetime, this one also requires adjustments and a new way of thinking. It may feel a bit inconvenient at first. You may wonder if it is worth the additional cost. But consider this, the environmental challenges we face are significant and immediate. We will not solve them with one action, by one person or one government, or with one new technology. We will only make progress by everyone doing their part, making adjustments, and living in a new way. In addition, your family can benefit from eating healthier foods and enjoying the food they eat even more!